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    16 Replies Latest reply on Oct 8, 2014 1:56 PM by Moderator Rebecca

    Asking advice from other entrepreneurs

    newflowers Adventurer

      Hello I am new to being an entrepreneur. I am trying to start my own flower shop online which will be ran out of my home. I have a cooler, some supplies minus the flowers until i get my license or EIN. What I really need to know is how to get paid from the website? do i need a card machine if i take calls from customers on the phone who give me their information? do i really need an accountant? I already have a tax person who agreed to do my business taxes as well she also told me she would show me how to keep track of things on my computer for her and it makes her job easier if i do this. i thought that i had everything in order but when i did some research it talked about taxes and how to take those out and all of that stuff. So I am asking some of you who already have your business going how you started....any advice would be greatly appreciated.

        • Re: Asking advise from other entrepreneurs
          Moderator Berta Guide

          Hi Newflowers. Welcome to the community.

           

          Do you have a business bank account set up yet? I believe you can talk to them about how take payments from phone calls online & have the payment directly deposited into your bank account. That would be where I would start when it comes to taking payments. At the least, the bank should be able to direct you to where you need to be to be able to take payments by phone.

           

          Anyone else have any suggestions for Newflowers?

           

          I wish you the best & please keep us updated on your progress.

           

          ~Berta

          1 of 1 people found this helpful
          • Re: Asking advise from other entrepreneurs
            LUCKIEST Guide

            Welcome to the Community and good luck.

            It is great that you have a tax person on your side.

            My suggestions to new businesses is that they have an Accountant, (your tax person), A Banker

            (and yes a business bank account), a Lawyer and an Insurance person.

             

            Yes I know that it costs $$$$ to have the professionals, BUT over time they should save MUCH more

            than they charge.

             

            Another VERY important item is a Business Plan. The plan is like a road map to your business success.

             

            Again good luck and let us know how we can help. LUCKIEST

            1 of 1 people found this helpful
              • Re: Asking advise from other entrepreneurs
                newflowers Adventurer

                Thank you for welcoming me to the community I am very glad that there are people out there to help others along the way. I do have a bank, I am holding off on the accountant because as small as I am starting I think I can handle the books for now. I don't need an insurance agent right at the moment or a lawyer on "tap" for the simple reason is the business is ran from home online so I will not need to be insured in my state, I just have to be licensed which will be soon. The only advice I am asking is once i get the license, officially open the bank account and obtain the "visa machine" as everyone calls it, will i pretty much have to buy the flowers and have them on hand or should i wait until I see orders coming in? I have been doing some amature advertising on Facebook, just pictures of what i can do and have done. Any advice towards my questions is greatly appreciated.

                  • Re: Asking advise from other entrepreneurs
                    LUCKIEST Guide

                    Let me try to answer your question about having "flowers on hand".

                    My best guess would be how fact you need to fill the orders.

                    You live in Ohio (maybe in a big city).

                    If you get  a big order for Flowers on say Tuesday for the coming weekend,

                    how fast can you fill the order??

                    Do you a relationship with more than one florist in the area who will help you out??

                    All this should be included in Your business plan.

                     

                    I LOVE BUSINESS PLANS. They are YOUR map to SUCCESS.

                     

                    Again LUCKIEST

                    • Re: Asking advise from other entrepreneurs
                      Moderator Rebecca Guide

                      Hi newflowers, Luckiest has given you some great advice about the need for a business plan.  If you haven't created one yet, we have a great guide that will help you through all of the necessary steps here:  Guide: How to develop a business plan.   This will help you to determine the best path for you to take while starting your business to make it successful.

                       

                  • Re: Asking advise from other entrepreneurs
                    elevatemybiz Adventurer

                    Hi NewFlowers,

                    As a business owner myself and now have gone into helping other business' as a business consultant you really need to step back and look at what you are exactly doing.  What advertising have you done so far, is your website up and running completely.  Have you set up a Google AdWords account to advertise on Google, yes FaceBook can be good for bigger business that can afford $5-10,000 a day so you personally see there ad 5 times a day but the main question you have to ask yourself is when you get your license which I don't even know what license you are talking about because I don't see a reason for you to be an LLC.  This sounds like something you are doing on the side? I would make it a sole-proprietorship and go to this website for your EIN you will have it in 10 minutes and you can take it down to the bank and open your account.  It will be your name DBA XYZ Flowers.  As for inventory if you started tomorrow how many orders are you expecting because flowers DO NOT last long, do you think you would have 1 or 100, like I said before it all depends on your friends network, word of mouth and truly online advertising.  Being a small business like you are you don't need an accountant, lawyer or insurance agent.  Unless you get some roses that were sprayed with some airborne WMA or poison and its going to make someone sick thats the only reason you would need a General Liability policy. Also if you plan on doing over 300,000 annual revenue then get an accountant but for now just use quickbooks online.  Honestly you can send someone and invoice they can pay it right on the invoice with a credit card or ACH and the payment is automatically recorded.  Go to Capital Ono Spark for business or when you open your bank account with BOA ask for a credit card so you can use that to do your ordering and your using someone else's money for the first 30 days to hold a inventory if you absolutely have to.  Your bank account & debit card transactions, merchant account and credit card transactions will automatically flow into quickbooks and all you have to do is label them.  Its not easy owning your own business and thats why people like me have become more and more sought after because everyone wants to be in business for themselves but not a lot of people know all the in's and outs.

                     

                    Kevin Cormier

                    kevin@elevatemgmt.com

                      • Re: Asking advise from other entrepreneurs
                        elevatemybiz Adventurer

                        Sorry I forgot to put the website in for the EIN go here and fill this this out https://sa.www4.irs.gov/modiein/individual/index.jsp

                        • Re: Asking advise from other entrepreneurs
                          newflowers Adventurer

                          Wow Kevin you are very intelligent with the business aspects. I would like to keep in contact with you. I do know that quick books costs money but i will check that out on my own. I am going to do sole-proprietorship, it's just senseless at this stage to do an LLC and have an accountant and an attorney, I am not that big and to tell you the truth right now until i get my vendors license its just family and friends that i do work for. I like to get a word of mouth out there right away and then do all of the complicated stuff in the near future. Thank you all for your responses and you will definitely be hearing from me to let you know how i am doing with this.

                            • Re: Asking advise from other entrepreneurs
                              elevatemybiz Adventurer

                              Definitely stay in touch you have my email... Kevin@elevatemgmt.com and

                              glad I could help. As for QuickBooks yes the desktop version is pricey but

                              I recommend just using the online version it's called QBO (quickbooks

                              online) Here's a link for a free trial after that's it's 12.95 a month and

                              cheaper if you pay for a year I believe but the benefits to that is you can

                              do everything you can on the desktop version such as print out checks,

                              manage your banks accounts (automatically sync transactions) but it also

                              has an incredible app where if your taking a payment on the road you can do

                              it right through the app and say you stop for gas you can open the app,

                              expense it and take a picture of the receipt.  Also BOA and into it have a

                              strong relationship so talk your banker they might be able to help you out

                              with the price if you add payroll to your account through Inuit which auto

                              syncs I believe they don't charge you for your account.  Look into it.

                              Also what is this venders license you are waiting for I don't know where

                              you live but you need a license to sell flowers where you live?

                               

                              Kevin C.

                              kevin@elevatemgmt.com

                              www.ElevateMyBiz.com

                               

                               

                              On Tuesday, September 30, 2014, newflowers <

                              • Re: Asking advise from other entrepreneurs
                                elevatemybiz Adventurer

                                The links never work lol... Here's the QBO link...

                                https://quickbooks.intuit.com/start/core_sui?bc=USS-TAN

                                 

                                On Tuesday, September 30, 2014, newflowers <

                                • Re: Asking advise from other entrepreneurs
                                  elevatemybiz Adventurer

                                  Not sure if this went through I'll try to send it again... But definitely

                                  stay in touch you have my email... also glad I could help and take a look

                                  at my site for some ideas ElevateMyBiz.com.  As for QuickBooks yes the

                                  desktop version is pricey but I recommend just using the online version

                                  it's called QBO (quickbooks online) Here's a link for a free trial...

                                  https://quickbooks.intuit.com/start/core_sui?bc=USS-TAN

                                  after that's it's 12.95 a month and cheaper if you pay for a year I believe

                                  but the benefits to that is you can do everything you can on the desktop

                                  version such as print out checks, manage your banks accounts (automatically

                                  sync transactions) but it also has an incredible app where if your taking a

                                  payment on the road you can do it right through the app and say you stop

                                  for gas you can open the app, expense it and take a picture of the

                                  receipt.  Also BOA and into it have a strong relationship so talk your

                                  banker they might be able to help you out with the price if you add payroll

                                  to your account through Inuit which auto syncs I believe they don't charge

                                  you for your account.  Look into it.  Also what is this venders license you

                                  are waiting for I don't know where you live but you need a license to sell

                                  flowers where you live? Is that through the health department or is it more

                                  a sales and use tax certificate to buy wholesale?

                                   

                                  Kevin

                                   

                                  On Tuesday, September 30, 2014, newflowers <

                              • Re: Asking advise from other entrepreneurs
                                jonathan nzali Scout

                                Set up an e-commerce page very easy to set up if you have tangible products and know what prices you want to sell at. Ipage has a tutorial and an already set up e-commerce portal if you set up with them. Many other providers do as well. Let me know if you have any question

                                • Re: Asking advise from other entrepreneurs
                                  Eddie Johnson Wayfarer

                                  Welcome, NewFlowers!

                                   

                                  We often help entrepreneurs to set up their online businesses as well as help them with setting up their business processes so they can run their businesses as smoothly as possible.

                                   

                                  Personally, I love working with entrepreneurs. If you would like to pick my brain, let me know.

                                   

                                  Good luck and I hope to hear from you soon!

                                   

                                  Eddie

                                  • Re: Asking advise from other entrepreneurs
                                    joerocket10 Newbie

                                    To answer your question. open a PayPal account. You don't need a machine, just internet and an email. They can email you the money. If you get an e-commerce account on PayPal they can help with ensuring you're paid and the customer is getting their flowers. For that As for sales tax and accountant. Eventually you will. It's the safest thing to do. You can check with your state department of finance online whether your state will require sales tax. Besides, in todays day and age most people can pay online through something like PayPal.. if they're finding you online then they can pay you online. one other thing. I volunteer for an organization called SCORE. They're retired business executives allied with the Small Business Administration (SBA) who can provide you help at low or no costs.

                                     

                                    Message was edited by: Joseph Morris

                                    • Re: Asking advice from other entrepreneurs
                                      Moderator Rebecca Guide

                                      Hi newflowers, just checking back in with you to see how things are going and what type of progress you may be making.  I hope things are going better for your now!  I also wanted to let you know about this great new video our experts have put out:  Video Replay: Women in Business – Take Advantage of Rising Revenues, Optimism, and Power . This video is part of our Small Business Social Series has a great new video lots of great information for female entrepreneurs.. Please take a moment to check it out!


                                      Cheers,

                                      Rebecca